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Old 09-26-2010, 01:25 PM   #1
bcarlson
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Dificulty choosing reader

I am having difficulty choosing a reader. I have enough money saved up for a Kindle 3G but I think I want a Sony PRS-650. I like the various formats that sony will read but I can't figure out if it is worth the extra $40. I want to be able to check books out from my library and download from other sources then Amazon. If I get other books not from Amazon, can I convert them to PDF and read it on the kindle? Can I convert epub books and other formats with Caliber? after DRM is removed. Can I use Caliber with a new kindle?

One thing I read about the Kindle is that Amazon keeps your books on their servers but can pull them when they choose. Is this still true? Can I keep the file on my home computer instead of Amazon's server?

I also seem to see the difference between the two cheap ones is one has 3G access. Can I put an SD card in a kindle? I seem to be able to in a sony.

I also have the option of picking up a PRS-600 on clearance from Target. Those who have one, do you like it? Better then a 650?

Any advice would be helpful, thanks.

Last edited by bcarlson; 09-26-2010 at 01:36 PM.
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Old 09-26-2010, 02:59 PM   #2
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"I am having difficulty choosing a reader. I have enough money saved up for a Kindle 3G but I think I want a Sony PRS-650. I like the various formats that sony will read but I can't figure out if it is worth the extra $40."

It depends. Kindle is very nice hardware, but is not very useful for a large variety of formats. Other devices are better there.

"I want to be able to check books out from my library and..."

Kindle cannot do this.

"...download from other sources then Amazon. If I get other books not from Amazon, can I convert them to PDF and read it on the kindle? Can I convert epub books and other formats with Caliber? after DRM is removed. Can I use Caliber with a new kindle?"

In fact, you HAVE to strip DRM and convert to .mobi format for a Kindle. Calibre is one method. I recommend its Command Line Interface (CLI), rather than the Graphical User Interface (GUI). Personally, I'd convert to almost anything other than PDF, but that's a matter of taste.

"One thing I read about the Kindle is that Amazon keeps your books on their servers but can pull them when they choose. Is this still true? Can I keep the file on my home computer instead of Amazon's server?"

It is still true. You can keep copies on your personal computer, irrespective of Amazon.

"I also seem to see the difference between the two cheap ones is one has 3G access. Can I put an SD card in a kindle? I seem to be able to in a sony."

Kindle 3's have no SD card slot. Some Sonys do. I don't believe the bottom of the line Sony does.

Please do a little more research. If you need to read protected PDFs of technical papers, newspapers, comics or large format graphical content of any kind, you probably don't want a 5 or 6" e-reader. If you have specific formats you need to read, look for a reader that excels at that format. Kindles and Sonys (and Nooks and...) are made for the immersive reading of text, primarily fiction and expository non-fiction. If you need more than that, stick with some other kind of reading device (tablet, laptop, etc.)

Enjoy,
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Old 09-26-2010, 03:09 PM   #3
bcarlson
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I am looking mainly for a fiction and non-fiction reader. I don't need to read journals or technical manuals.

Will Caliber strip DRM? I would like, if I bought a Kindle, to strip the DRM off of library books so I can read them.

It looks like the sony will not read mobi, but does epub. Is epub better then mobi?

Last edited by bcarlson; 09-26-2010 at 03:20 PM.
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Old 09-26-2010, 04:27 PM   #4
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I would go for the PRS-650.

By default calibre would not strip any DRM. You may include a plugin which does remove DRM while you add a book.

Calibre is able to convert book between different formats including epub and mobi.
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Old 09-26-2010, 04:36 PM   #5
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Sony and Kindle and a lot of other readers can all be used for reading books, as long as they are neither pdf nor technical books. epub is used by most non Kindle readers, azw is used by kindle. If you want to read both formats on the same reader (a fair request in my opinion), You have to go through some steps for one of the formats.
You will need to dedrm first, then convert format. The dedrm process may not be discussed in details here, the conversion can be done by calibre.
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Old 09-26-2010, 06:38 PM   #6
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I understand we cannot go into detail about DRM removal, but if I get a DRMed book in PDF or Epub can it it be converted (once the drm is stripped) to MOBI to be read on the Kindle?

Looking at my finances, I am thinking the cheaper kindle 3. I am going to be using various other options to get my books besides amazon so I don't think I need the 3g. but I need to be sure that that I can convert an Adobe EPUB (Overdrive Format) to a format that works on the kindle.
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Old 09-26-2010, 10:41 PM   #7
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Converting a DRM-free file from ePub to Mobi is easy when you are using Calibre. It may be easy for pdf's. However, if you are converting an older pdf you may have difficulty. Some older pdf's do not have any real text. They are actually pictures of pages. This type of pdf doesn't covert as readily.
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Old 09-26-2010, 11:05 PM   #8
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Sounds like the Sony is a good fit for you if money is not an issue and you are comfortable without wireless.

If you want wireless or are concerned about price, the Kindle is probably the way to go.

DRM and various formats are a trivial problem. You can get library books with a Kindle and you can get Amazon books for a Sony. Stripping DRM and reformatting take a couple minutes max per book.

The only thing that would make me wary of a Kindle is that they (as far as I know) don't reflow PDFs. You have to pan and scan.

But honestly, I think the K3 wifi is the best value going, and that comes from a happy and satisfied Sony user.
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Old 09-28-2010, 01:35 AM   #9
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If you decide on the Sony, definitely spend the extra money for the 650!! I just bought a 650 yesterday and I love it. Screen is much clearer than the 600s, better touch screen, better PDF display--you can lock in the zoom mode on the 650s, better dictionaries...just a much better unit all around.

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